This is the full 7-5-10 episode of the Labor Express Radio program.
On today’s program we take a look at an issue that I am embarrassed to say we have sorely neglected over the past few months. The explosion in April on the Deepwater Horizon Oil Exploration vessel in the Gulf of Mexico and the subsequent on-going oil spill is the most extreme environmental catastrophe involving the oil industry in our nation’s history. By all accounts, the spill, which is still not under control, will devastate ecosystems in the Gulf for generations to come. The ecology of the gulf region could be irreversible altered by this catastrophe born from corporate greed and our dependency on fossil fuels. And in all ecological disasters there is a human cost – in this case, the possible destruction of the livelihoods of those who live off the bounty of the gulf coast waters. But of course there is another aspect to this story that has perhaps not received as much attention – the loss of 11 lives from the initial explosion. Shortcuts and poor safety decisions made by BP and its business partners on the Deepwater Horizon cost the lives of 11 workers – a story eerily similar to one we have covered here on Labor Express, the loss of 29 at the Massey Energy Mine in Upper Big Branch in West Virginia. There too a history and pattern of disregard for safety regulations cost workers their lives. But there is another similarity between the Deepwater Horizon and Massey. Both were non-union facilities. And it is an established fact that no union equals less safety in the workplace. On today’s program will hear from Dean Corgey, VP of the Gulf Coast Region of the Seafarers International Union. He will argue that the anti-union attitude of the companies involved in oil and gas exploration in the Gulf is a major factor in the recent disaster.
Will also here excerpts from a Labor Beat Live to Web T.V. program aired on Friday June 25th which took a look at the state of immigrant rights in the wake of the anti-immigrant laws recently passed in Arizona.
Labor Express Radio is Chicago's only English language labor news and current affairs radio program. News for working people, by working people. Labor Express Radio airs every Monday morning at 10:00 AM on Chicago's Sound Alliance, WLUW, 88.7 FM. For more information, see our website at: www.laborexpress.org
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